Willians Astudillo, who can come off of the 10-day injured list on Wednesday, ran a handful of sprints in the in the outfield before the game. All indications are that his hamstring strain is not serious, and he will be back sooner than later.

"I think the progress is going well," Astudillo said. "I'm feeling good. I don't see why not, next week, I'm going to be ready to come back."

Astudillo is eligible to come off the 10-day injured list next Wednesday, which is at the end of a road trip to Toronto and just ahead of an off-day. It would make sense that the Twins would leave Astudillo home to work out. But manager Rocco Baldelli suggested that they can't enjoy the La Tortuga experience if he's left in the Twin Cities.

"It is not something that we think is going to take an exceptionally long time," Baldelli said, "and, on top of that, I think he's very interested in staying with the team and traveling and we're also interested in having him join us."


Miguel Sano, who hasn't played for the Twins in any capacity this year, began his minor league rehabilitation stint on Tuesday when he was hit by a pitch, walked and popped out in three plate appearances for Class A Fort Myers. He was scheduled to play in an afternoon game on Wednesday but it was rained out and rescheduled as part of a doubleheader on Thursday.

Sano is expected to play a few games for the Miracle before moving on to Class AA Pensacola.

I'll leave you folks with a stat I just looked up because it sure seems like George Springer loves the first pitch. He's 5-for-12 this season when swinging at the first pitch with two home runs, five RBI and a 1.417 OPS. For his career, Springer is batting .367 on the first pitch with 23 home runs and a 1.027 OPS.

What should that tell Martin Perez? Don't just ease that first pitch over the plate. Fillet him with a cut fastball.

This is going to be a test for Perez, as Houston is starting right-handed hitting lineup.

Astros

George Springer, RF
Jose Altuve, 2B
Alex Bregman, 3B
Carlos Correa, SS
Yuli Gurriel, 1B
Aledmys Diaz, LF
Tyler White, DH
Max Stassi, C
Jake Marisnick, CF

Collin McHugh, RHP

Twins

Max Kepler, RF
Jorge Polanco, SS
Nelson Cruz, DH
Eddie Rosario, LF
C.J. Cron, 1B
Marwin Gonzalez, 3B
Mitch Garver, C
Jonathan Schoop, 2B
Byron Buxton, CF

Martin Perez, LHP

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